With many gyms closed across the world, people have been turning to online workout routines to boost immunity and get their blood pumping. Just because we can’t workout at the gym doesn’t mean we can’t get our sweat on in more creative ways! With so many workout apps, sites, and programs online today, you have an abundance of choices when it comes to breaking a sweat. You can even pop in an old dance workout video or play on the WiiFit – the choices are endless!
Of course, with so many options, you might become overwhelmed and not even know where to start, so we’ve found five good choices for workout routines you can do at home. Here they are, in no particular order.
5 Home Workout Routines You Can Do At Home to Boost Your Immune System
1 – Practice yoga.
Yoga not only helps to strengthen the body, but it also helps calm the mind and unite your soul with a higher consciousness. So, if you’ve been feeling stressed about this whole shutdown situation, yoga can help lower your cortisol while also giving you a great workout! While some types of yoga don’t burn as many calories, you can choose others such as Vinyasa or Bikram that will really get your heart pumping.
It also involves breathwork and mindfulness so that you get more in tune with your body, which helps balance the chakras as well. Yoga does so much for the mind, body and soul that it might just top any other type of workout you can think of doing. You can find plenty of free YouTube videos to get you started, or if you want a membership, there are sites such as yogaglo.com that provide different types of yoga and meditation for a low monthly cost.
The great thing about yoga is that anyone can do it whether you’ve been practicing for years or have just started getting into it.
Here are just a few benefits of yoga:
- Reduces frequency and severity of migraines. A 2007 study placed 72 migraine patients into two groups: either self-care or yoga therapy. After three months, those who did yoga had the most drastic decreases in severity of migraines.
- Improves cardiovascular health. Since yoga lowers stress, it can also help to decrease blood pressure and heart rate, which both contribute to heart disease and strokes.
- Reduces chronic pain. Yoga helps to increase stamina and endurance, which can in turn boost resilience to pain.
- Improves balance and flexibility. One 2014 study split 66 elderly individuals into two groups: one that practiced calisthenics and one that did yoga. A year later, the group that did yoga had a staggering four times the flexibility of the calisthenics group.
- Helps depression and anxiety. By lowering stress and calming the mind, yoga can help ease depression and anxiety symptoms. In fact, one study found that more than half of women with PTSD who did yoga just once a week didn’t meet the criteria for PTSD any longer.
- Improves sleep quality. Lower stress, anxiety and depression helps lower cortisol, which often keeps people up at night.
- Lowers inflammation. Also, lower cortisol means that the body can function better overall, and improved circulation from yoga can decrease inflammation.
2 – Woodchoppers
If you need a good ab workout, look no further than this exercise! It targets both the abs and obliques for a full ab blaster, and the movements help to strengthen the core and improve posture. This exercise can also improve balance and stability.
How to do them:
- Stand shoulder-width apart with the feet pointed slightly outward.
- Begin to squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor, but remember to not slouch your back.
- Hold a small weight with both hands and put it on the outer side of your right thigh.
- Turn your torso to the side and lift the weight up and across your body diagonally so it’s above the left shoulder.
- Keep both arms straight as you lift your body back up. Then, stand and turn your torso so you’re facing the dumbbell.
- Use your core muscles to control the movement as you lift your body and twist your torso. Come all the way up on your toes at the end.
- Return to the beginning position by reversing the twisting. As you bring the dumbbell back down, it will look like you’re chopping wood.
- Do three sets of 10 to 15 reps on each side.
3 – Box jumps
Box jumps fall under the classification of a plyometric workout which puts your whole body to work. While it’s a simple exercise, it’s also pretty tough and will definitely give you a good addition for your home workout routine. It engages your legs, core and back muscles as you use your body to jump onto the box and back down again. By engaging the whole body, you’ll help improve endurance, stamina, and cardiovascular health.
How to do them:
- First, you need to get a box or find a platform or ledge to jump on.
- Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart close to the box or platform.
- Bend your body into a partial squat, pull your arms backward, and then swing them forward as you launch your body toward the box.
- Try to land as softly as you can on the box so you don’t injure your ankles or legs.
- To come back down, you can either jump down or lift one leg at a time, which will strengthen the gluten as well.
- Try to do at least 10-15 jumps to begin with, and increase over time as you get stronger.
4- Donkey kicks
Donkey kicks are a simple yet effective exercise that target the glutes as well as the core. This workout also trains your lower back, pelvic floor, and shoulders. You can add donkey kicks into your normal workout routine if you want to increase your strength and reduce love handles.
How to do them:
- Get on your hands and knees and keep your face parallel to the floor.
- Keep your back straight and keep abs tight.
- Raise your right knee and kick it out and up so that your left thigh is still parallel to the floor.
- Return to the starting position and repeat 10 times. Switch legs and do the exercise again. Try to do 3 sets on each side.
5 – Side planks
Planks help strengthen the core and target your back, shoulders, neck, and chest as well. You can do different variations of the plank to target different muscle groups, but the side plank specifically targets the obliques and core.
Here’s how to do it:
- Lie on your side with your legs stretched out and on top of each other. Put your right elbow directly beneath your shoulder, and keep your head aligned with your spine.
- Contract your ab muscles, inhale, and pull the navel in toward your spine.
- Exhale and lift your knees and hips off the floor, keeping your torso in a straight line. Hold this for at least 20 seconds to begin with.
- Gradually work your way up to holding one minute on each side. Then, switch sides and repeat.
Other ways to boost your immune system (in addition to your home workout routine):
- Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and veggies. Processed sugars, alcohol, caffeine, recreational drugs, white flour, fast food, and boxed foods all lower your immune system. Make sure to keep your vibration high by choosing as many raw fruits and veggies as you can. Also, eat brown rice, quinoa, nuts, seeds, unpasteurized dairy, pasture-raised eggs, and, if you choose, lean meats such as chicken and turkey. Salmon is great for Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids, but you can take a fish oil supplement alternatively.
- Get plenty of sleep. A lack of sleep can affect your immune system over time because it increases cortisol, and therefore, inflammation. Make sure you get at least 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Turn off technology a couple hours before bed and have a bedtime routine each night.
- Drink lots of water. Roughly 60-70% of our bodies are water, so it makes sense that we need to replenish our water as much as we can! Many people suffer from chronic dehydration, so bring a bottle with you wherever you go, and choose filtered water whenever possible.
We have immune systems so that they can keep our bodies healthy and away from harmful invaders such as viruses. However, if we abuse our bodies with unhealthy foods, lack of quality sleep and exercise, and a highly stressful life, our immune systems can’t do their jobs. So, the workout routines listed above will help build your immunity by increasing your strength, endurance, and stamina.
Also, eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of sun, having a sleep routine, drinking plenty of water, and keeping your stress low will give your immune system all it needs to do its job properly.